ICE users are frequently giving birth to stillborn, premature, dangerously underweight or distressed babies.
The Royal Australian College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has advised that the damage done to babies by pregnant ICE addicts is still largely unknown.
ICE use has contributed to the death of babies through many miscarriages and stillbirths.
ICE users that are pregnant are more likely to have abruption or bleeding behind the placenta.
ICE use does affect fetal growth with babies born early and quite small.
(Source: ninemsn.com news 13 July 2007)
The regular use of ICE and other amphetamines has serious health consequences for mothers as well as their babies.
Protocols for dealing with ICE and other illicit drug withdrawal are still being drawn up for those babies that survive to birth.
The long term health consequences for babies born addicted to illicit drugs particularly newer drugs like ICE are unknown.
ICE is known to cause users to be violent and have brain damage, psychosis, heart problems, stroke and decreased immunity so new born babies can be affected in the same way.
The only sensible strategy is to reduce the illicit drug using population of women of child bearing age.
Less illicit drug addicted women means less drug affected babies.
Battery acid and drain cleaner are just two of the toxic substances put in the concoctions sold as the drug ICE.
The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime has warned East Asian crime gangs are producing ICE in super labs trying to take over the Australian market from bikie gangs.
(Source: The Australian newspaper, 5 November 2007)
ICE causes strokes and heart attacks in young people as well as aggression and long term mental health problems.
In Victoria alone there are 40 ICE related deaths each year.
ICE is the most dangerous form of amphetamine and is extremely addictive.
(Source: the Melbourne Age newspaper, 5 November 2007)
ICE use is symptomatic of all illicit drug use with young Australians seeking chemicals to escape reality.
Information campaigns to disclose the dangers of illicit drugs ARE needed to dissuade young people to try a particular drug so are campaigns to try all illicit drugs.
All illicit drugs are illegal because the harm is known by scientific evidence.
Current illicit drug users need help to stop using before the health of a significant numbers of young Australians is damaged beyond repair.
Australia must now act to introduce effective compulsory detoxification and rehabilitation to reduce the demand for all illicit drugs.
Lets ditch harm minimization for world's best practice.
A recent study in the USA has found that the illicit drug ICE (methamphetamine) is highly costly to the community.
The study identified addiction costs, premature deaths, shortened lives, rehabilitation, crime, criminal justice, lost productivity, toxic chemical fires, child protection and loss of quality of life as costing the community with ICE use.
Hospital admissions for ICE use were as high as 59 per cent of some hospital emergency departments.
(Source: News-Medical.Net 6 February 2009).
ICE use in Australia is high like that of the U.S.A. so we can expect that the costs to our community would be likewise high.
No comparable study on the true costs of ICE use has been undertaken in Australia.
ICE is highly addictive and can be taken orally, injected, snorted or smoked.
ICE causes aggressive violence, paranoia, delusions and brain damage.
Australia needs an early intervention detoxification and rehabilitation system to stem the cost of ICE use.
Australia also needs an early intervention prevention program that deters the use of ICE before the costs are incurred.
Australian courts should be empowered to divert ICE users into supervised detoxification and rehabilitation to get them free of ICE use as a cost effective method of reducing the costs and freeing users of the harm.
Cocaine users are more likely than non-users to suffer from HIV, Hepatitis, sexually transmitted and other diseases according to a recent study by the McLean Hospital Alcohol and Drug Abuse Research Centre in Belmont Massachusetts.
The study found that cocaine impairs the human body's immune defence system for at least four hours.
This weakened immune defence system makes it more likely that an infection like HIV or the common cold can take hold.
The study involved 30 participants with a history of cocaine use that had used cocaine at least once within the past month.
The research suggesting the compromised immune system for cocaine users could help to explain the known high incidence of infectious diseases amongst drug users.
(Source: Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 2003, pages 1188-1193)
This research confirms other scientific research that indicates that illicit drugs suppress the human immune system.
Past scientific research has disclosed that cannabis use also suppresses the human immune system making users more susceptible to infections (see our web site at www.daca.org.au).
As well, cocaine use can prove fatal.
Infections like HIV and Hepatitis have serious health problems so programs that maintain illicit drug use should be replaced by rehabilitation to a drug free condition.
The Metropolitan Police in the United Kingdom have come up with a unique way of showing the health damage from the use of illicit drugs.
In a series of before and after photos of young women that used cocaine the severe aging is clear.
The damaged faces of the women are shown at the police web site and have been produced on posters, beer mats and nightclub flyers.
The shocking images showing the degenerative effects of drug use indicate that drug use can prematurely age young women in as little at 3 years of drug use.
One teenager looks 20 years older after using cocaine.
(Drug damage images are at www.met.police.uk/drugs/crackdown.htm)
All illicit drug users suffer physical harm and damaged looks are one of the health consequences.
However premature aging from using illicit drugs means rising health costs to the community as medical conditions normally associated with aging are brought forward to an earlier stage in life.
Cannabis is known to suppress the human immune system and to cause cancer so the health risks extend beyond aging.
By using our courts to divert illicit drug users into detoxification and rehabilitation we can help users to avoid these future health burdens and save costs to the community.
These premature aging images MUST be used by Australian governments as part of their drug prevention education campaigns to turn teenagers away from future drug use.
Taking Action - Stopping Ice
United Nations Office of Drugs & Crime: Drug Prevention & Treatment
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